“For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.”
Paul gives two reasons he wants the Christian to “seek” and “set our minds” on “things above.” The first reason is that we died with Christ and are therefore hidden with him in God. The second is our life “is hidden with Christ in God.”
“For you died”
“For”– the reason for setting our minds on “things above.” At the point of our salvation, we died spiritually with Christ on the cross (Gal. 2:20). The Greek tense indicated that our death with Christ occurred at a definite point (aorist). This death was a definite past experience.
The believer died 2000 years ago. This positional death is not a death the believer experiences over and over. It took place once with Christ. Jesus took our death by His death. We died once for all to the world and now live with Christ in God. This is a death of justification for the believer. Justification established our position before God in Christ and placed the righteousness of Jesus Christ on us. We are a partner in His righteousness. This past positional death in Christ (2:10) is the basis for daily living.
Verse one shows our identifying with Christ in His resurrection; this verse shows our identifying with Christ as He hung upon the cross. God identifies us with the death of Christ.
Because Christ is our portion, we died to things below. If we died to these things, it is foolish to “seek” and “set our mind” on “things below.” Since we died to these things positionally, we should behave like a dead person to these things. Sin should not affect us like it once did.
We base our right to live before God on calculating our past death in Christ.
“Dead reckoning” is a nautical term. When a captain cannot make astronomical calculations because of cloud cover, he must use “dead reckoning” to properly find his place in the ocean. “Dead reckoning” gauges the ship’s location from the records of its progress made in the log book.
The Christian’s logbook is the Bible. There we find our position in Christ from what God has gone on record to say. We need not consult our feelings. We do not evaluate circumstances. We calculate what God did for us in Christ.
“What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound? 2 Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it? 3 Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? 4 Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. 5 For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection, 6 knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin. 7 For he who has died has been freed from sin. 8 Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him, 9 knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, dies no more. Death no longer has dominion over Him. 10 For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all; but the life that He lives, He lives to God. 11 Likewise you also, reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom. 6:6-11).
God wants us to reckon (calculate) ourselves dead to sin and alive to God.